An initiative sponsored by Heart of America Northwest, a Seattle-based nonprofit, would prohibit the Hanford Nuclear Reservation from accepting any more mixed or hazardous waste from other facilities until its own toxic and radioactive waste is safely cleaned up or stored. More than 280,000 Washington voters signed a petition to get the initiative on November’s ballot. But the Tri-Industrial Development Council, an organization of 270 businesses, worries that if it’s passed, Initiative 297 will set an example for other states, such as Nevada or New Mexico — and Washington could someday be prevented from shipping its nuclear waste to other states.
While the Republican National Convention was in full swing at the end of August, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced it was opening 243,500 acres of wildlife refuges to fishing and hunting. According to a news story in The Seattle Times: "Asked if it might help President Bush’s re-election efforts, the agency’s director, Steve Williams said, ‘This is just another example of the president’s commitment to sportsmen.’ "